What you should know about the detention facility Melania Trump is visiting

First Lady Melania Trump just arrived at a child detention center in McAllen, Texas and is expected to tour the Lutheran Social Services of the South, a facility with about 60 children, approximately half male, half female ranging from 5 to 17 years old. The children there are mostly teenagers, but some are tender age. 

The facility is permanent and is run by an HHS grantee, and HHS runs and regulates it. She’s expected to hold a roundtable discussion with doctors and social workers, who will tell her about the services they provide (meals, education, healthcare, psychological services), then she’ll tour that facility. 

The trip came together extremely quickly — within 48 hours — and the first lady took the initiative to travel herself, directing her office to set up the visit. 

“This was her decision. She told her staff she wanted to go and we made that happen. He (President Trump) is supportive of that, but she told him, ‘I’m heading down to Texas,’” her spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham told reporters on the flight to McAllen. 

Trump was moved by the images and sounds of the children separated from their parents, and sought to see an unfiltered view of the situation on the ground. “The images struck her as a mother, as a human being, and also as a first lady,” Grisham said, adding, “She wanted to see as close to what she had been seeing on TV. She wants to see what’s real, she wants to see a realistic view of what’s happening.” 

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